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NRCS Activities: Using the Monitoring Framework PowerPoint Presentation
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NRCS Activities: Using the Monitoring Framework

NRCS Activities: Using the Monitoring Framework

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NRCS Activities: Using the Monitoring Framework

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  1. NRCS Activities: Using theMonitoringFramework Presentation for Office of Management and Budget March 26, 2003 Thomas W. Christensen, Director Animal Husbandry & Clean Water Programs Natural Resources Conservation Service

  2. NRCS Activities: Using theMonitoringFramework • NRCS Perspective • Approach to Conservation • Planning Procedure Complements Framework • Case Study – Upper Potomac River • Performance-Based Efforts

  3. NRCS Perspective • Mission : Provide leadership in a partnership effort to help people conserve, maintain, & improve natural resources and the environment. • NRCS Does Not Monitor – We cooperate, collaborate, and communicate with monitoring entities.

  4. A Coordination Model for Federal Activities to Achieve Enduring Natural Resource Conservation and Environmental Protection • Research • CSREES • ARS • ERS • FS • EPA • USGS • FWS • NOAA • Technical Assistance • CSREES • FS • NRCS • EPA • USGS • FWS • NOAA • Information • All Agencies • Education • CSREES SUSTAINABLE WATER QUALITY MANAGEMENT • Financial Assistance • FSA • FS • NRCS • EPA • FWS • Environmental Monitoring • EPA • USGS • NOAA • Regulatory Compliance & Oversight • EPA • FWS • USACE • Natural Resources Inventories • FS • NRCS • FWS • NOAA

  5. USDA Approach to Conservation • Voluntary, incentive-based approach • Science-based, site-specific solutions • Partnership with locally led processes • Adaptive management • Regulation serves a complementary role - “Bad Actors”

  6. NRCS Planning Procedure Complements Framework • Identify problems • Determine objectives • Inventory resources • Analyze resource data • Formulate alternatives • Evaluate alternatives • Make decisions • Implement the plan • Evaluate the plan

  7. NRCS Planning Procedure Complements Framework • NRCS Planning Procedure and the Monitoring Framework ENABLE Adaptive Management Implement Conservation Practices & Systems Evaluate Effectiveness Adapt/ Adjust/ Modify Conservation Practices & Systems

  8. Case Study – West Virginia Upper Potomac River Basin • 2.2 million acres • 1,700 miles of mostly high quality streams • Intensive animal agriculture = beef + poultry • 100% increase in poultry produced 1993-96 • Effective monitoring verified high nutrient loads, sediment, pathogens

  9. Case Study – West Virginia Upper Potomac River Basin • Locally Identified Concerns: • Water quality (algal blooms, fecal bacteria, etc.) • Limited land availability for nutrient application • Stream health and impacts on tourism (outdoor recreation) and trade • Economic and environmental viability of farms

  10. Case Study – West Virginia Upper Potomac River Basin • Funding Sources: • PL-534 - one of 11 projects authorized • EQIP, CRP • State Revolving Loan Funds • 319 Grants • Watershed Efforts: • Voluntary, incentive-based programs began in 1993 • TMDL developed in 1996 (fecal coliform)

  11. Case Study – West Virginia Upper Potomac River Basin • Outcomes: • 85% landowner participation • Livestock waste and poultry litter managed under 10 year contracts • Monitoring revealed that compliance expectations were met or exceeded • De-listing of streams for fecal coliform in 2002

  12. Performance-Based Efforts • Improve performance measurement and reporting • Validate environmental outcomes of conservation programs • Improve understanding of water resources • Define appropriate measures • Complexity of natural systems • Lag time – measurable results may take decades

  13. Performance-Based Efforts Conservation Assessment Effects Project (CEAP) • Purpose - To assess benefits/outcomes of implementing conservation programs • Tools – • National Resources Inventory (NRCS) • Farmer and rancher information (NASS) • Soil and water quality models (ARS, NRCS) • Small watershed monitoring/modeling (ARS, others)

  14. Performance-Based Efforts • CEAP will use the Framework to • Collaborate, coordinate, communicate with others • Ensure scientifically credible measurement methods are used • Meet the project goal of reporting annually on the benefits of conservation programs and systems